Giants manager Gabe Kapler, players kneel during anthem
San Francisco Giants' manager Gabe Kapler kneels during the national anthem prior to an exhibition baseball game against the Oakland Athletics, Monday, July 20, 2020, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, Calif. San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler and several of his players knelt during the national anthem before Monday night's exhibition game against the Oakland Athletics. Kapler, beginning his first season managing the Giants after two disappointing years guiding the Phillies, didn't discuss his plans to kneel in a pregame session with media members. Kapler has been outspoken about social injustice and racial issues and athletes' roles in helping spur positive change. Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started taking a knee during the national anthem in 2016 to protest racial inequality and police mistreatment of minorities. Former A's catcher Bruce Maxwell in 2017 became the first major leaguer to kneel for the anthem since Kaepernick began his silent protest.
Giants rookie Davis appreciates support in taking a knee
The Giants were playing an exhibition game at Oakland on Monday night with no fans after a months-long delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic. It turned out Davis had all kinds of support on every side of him, including from first-year San Francisco manager Gabe Kapler, who also took a knee before the Giants' 6-2 victory. So did first base coach Antoan Richardson, while shortstop Brandon Crawford stood between Davis and Richardson with a hand on each man's shoulder. The 26-year-old Davis, who is Black, said it was a difficult decision to kneel given he is a rookie. Then Yastrzemski and Hunter Pence pulled him aside and assured the right fielder they would support him regardless.